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Customs and Import DutiesBack to top Back to main Skip to menu
Malaysia - Customs and Import Duties
In order to ship your personal belongings from your home country into Malaysia, there are certain guidelines that you must adhere to. You must declare Customs form No.1 in order to successfully import your items. Outlined below are some of the guidelines you must follow:
An individual is allowed to import items from home as long as they adhere to the following guidelines:
The goods must have been used by the importer for a period of no less than 3 months.
The goods must not be disposed of less than 3 months after the date of importation into Malaysia.
The term ‘household effects’ refers to the following items belonging to the owner:
• crockery and cutlery
• bedding / curtains
• pictures / wall paintings
• electrical kitchen and garden appliances such as kettle, lawn mower, TV, radio / DVD
The importer must declare Customs Form No. 1 (K1) according to the following tariff codes:
a) 9800.00 400 Used Personal Effects
b) 9800.00 500 Used Household Effects
In order to import some electrical goods, you will have to obtain a permit from the department of electrical safety. Contact details listed below:
Director Department of Electrical Safety
Suruhanjaya Tenaga (Energy Commission)
10th Floor, Menara TH Perdana1001,
Jalan Sultan Ismail
50250 KUALA LUMPUR
Tel : +60 032612 5400/416/404
Fax : +60 03 2691 5584
There are some restricted items which require a permit before you are allowed to import them into the country and others which are prohibited completely. For more information about these specific items, please refer to the Malaysian Customs’ website: www.customs.gov.my.
Import duty and taxes are due when importing goods into Malaysia whether by a private individual or a commercial entity. Malaysia uses the CIF valuation method (Cost, Insurance and Freight), which means that the import duty and taxes payable are calculated from the total shipping value of the item including the cost of freight and insurance during shipping, not just the product itself. Some duties are also calculated based on their weight or volume.
Malaysia’s import duty rates can be anything from 0% to 50%, but the average duty rate is around 6%. There are some goods which are exempt from duty; these include electronic products such as laptops and electric guitars.
Sales tax also applies to all imported goods. The standard VAT rate on imports in Malaysia is set at 10% of the sum of the CIF value, duty and any excise applicable. Some products are taxed based on unit basis, such as per litre or per kg and some products are only subject to a reduced rate of VAT of between 0% and 5%.
In Malaysia, imports whose CIF value is less than RM 500 are exempt of duty, with the exception of alcohol, wine and tobacco products from the USA.
MM2H visa and customs incentives
One of the incentives the Malaysian government has set up to encourage expats to move to their country is exemption of duty on certain imported items. Individuals moving to Malaysia through the Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) scheme are allowed to either bring one car into the country, which they already owned before applying for the visa, without having to pay any duties at all on the car. Alternatively, they can purchase a car in Malaysia without paying any taxes on the purchased car.
If you do choose to import your car from home, then you must apply for approval within 6 months of the visa being issued. If you decide to buy a Malaysian car then you have to apply for approval within one year of entering the country. In both cases, you are not allowed to sell the car for at least two years after buying it or importing it into the country. If the individual does decide to sell the car after 2 years then the purchaser will have to pay taxes according to how much the car is worth at the time of purchase.
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